Edison in the News

“Thomas Edison Humanitarian Award” Announced

Edison Innovation Foundation (the “Edison Foundation”), based in Newark, New Jersey, has given the “Thomas Edison Humanitarian Award” to Richard Dodd (“Richie”) , a resident of Eatontown, New Jersey, for services rendered to the community during Hurricane Sandy. The Edison Foundation, created on behalf of Charles Edison, for his father Thomas Edison, promotes science and technology education and supports the legacy of Thomas Edison, from its offices in downtown Newark, New Jersey.

Richie Dodd, is the owner of the Rumson Exxon service station, in Rumson, New Jersey. During Hurricane Sandy in 2012, when power was out for much of coastal New Jersey, including Rumson Exxon, Richie devised a clever method (Thomas Edison would be proud) to extract gasoline from his underground service station tanks in order to supply the community residents with gasoline to fill their 5 gallon gas tanks and keep their home generators, and electricity, working. With a makeshift, lengthy pipe assembly, mated to a 1940s era hand pump, Richie got the gas flowing (more than 30,000 gallons over 2 weeks) so residents could keep their generators going. He told a TV reporter “You have to do it for the people…..as long as the people need it, we’ll pump it”. Richie made sure there were no price increases, no gouging as honest as he is and committed to helping people.

Aside from a blizzard of thank you notes from those who visited his station and out-of-state congratulatory notes as well, his efforts did not go unnoticed by TV news and media outlets and his story was featured on CBS Evening News on November 5, 2012. For his selfless actions, the Edison Foundation, awarded Richie Dodd the 2014 Thomas A. Edison Humanitarian Award.

John Keegan, Chairman and President of the Edison Fund, said “I think this was an unbelievable sacrifice by Richie and his team at Rumson Exxon to pump by hand 30,000 gallons of gasoline to help those who needed to run their generators for heat and the basic necessities during the aftermath of Storm Sandy. Richie Dodd is every bit the humanitarian as Thomas Edison, the great inventor who developed so many wonderful products that took the drudgery out of our lives. Thank you Richie.”

For more information regarding the Edison Innovation Foundation, please visit www.thomasedison.org or www.facebook.com/thomasedison.

Save the Date: Saturday, June 7, 2014

Come visit the Thomas Edison National Historical Park in West Orange, NJ. It will be Edison Day, a day-long celebration of the accomplishments of the world’s iconic inventor/entrepreneur.

See recordings as they were made on Edison phonographs, using the old-style recording cylinders; and learn how this technology developed and matured. See some of the first short motion pictures; and a model of the first motion picture studio-which was solar powered, using sunlight to make the movies.

Step back into the late 1880s as you tour the magnificent Edison Victorian style home (Glenmont); and visit the geothermal heating and cooling system built into the basement of the home in 2005/2006.

See Edison’s antique gasoline and electric vehicles in his nearby historic garage. Learn how Edison was promoting electric vehicles over 100 years ago!

This year there will be a street fair and many special attractions for you and the family to enjoy. If you have kids studying STEM-style programs in school, this is the place for you to learn how Edison’s inventive and creative work fits directly into the way school districts are integrating the subject matter in schools today.

Come to West Orange and see where technology and invention were born!

Fourth Annual Thomas Edison Invention Challenge Breaks Participation Record!

The “Solar Survival Kit”, “Eye in the Sky”, and “Solar Cooler” take top awards in  4th annual Thomas Edison Invention Challenge event. Thomas Edison was looking down and smiling on all the student entrants. Read more about this event.

The Inventors are Coming! The Inventors are Coming!

Time for the 4th annual Thomas Edison Invention Challenge [TEIC], to be held at the New Jersey Institute of Technology [NJIT], on Saturday, March 29th.

This year about 43 teams of inventors ranging in age from 6th thru 12th grade will put their inventions up for judging. The first TEIC had a meager group of 14 teams competing, as the competition grows bigger each year. Each team must develop an idea over a period of months, meet specific project milestones and be judged via a rigorous rubric that involves each team to research and write about their invention, keep a detailed inventor’s notebook, and build a mock-up of the design. Volunteer members of the scientific and engineering communities will judge the entries. Might just be the next Thomas Edison in this group of contestants. Check out last year’s TEIC.

Edison Teacher Award Winners 2014

The Edison Innovation Foundation announces – in honor of Thomas Edison’s birthday – the results of its Edison Teacher Awards, selecting teachers nationally for top award honors, along with five runner-up awards. Nominations were made as a result of an eblast to teachers all over the country. The winners and runner-ups exemplified the use of Edison and STEM teaching practices in their classrooms. Check out the details at www.edisonmuckers.org.

Seton Hall Preparatory Summer Interns

Under the supervision of the Thomas Edison National Historical Park’s Superintendent, Jill Hawk, the Seton Hall Preparatory School Summer Intern Program was, once again, a success. The interns, after a week of orientation and training, assisted in the maintenance and curatorial programs in readying the maintenance garage for the installation of a new artifact storage facility. After completion of the project, the young men assisted with a variety of tasks that helped provide a positive visitor experience. Jill was very appreciative for the Fund’s on going support and this work could not have been completed in a timely fashion without the help of these young gentlemen.

Book Signing – “Edison and the Rise of Innovation” by Leonard DeGraaf; Foreword by Bill Gates

WHAT: “Edison and the Rise of Innovation” Book Signing

WHERE: The Edison National Historical Park, 211 Main Street, West Orange, New Jersey  07052

WHEN: Wednesday, October 30, 2013 @ 6:30 p.m.

Tell Me More!

Bill Gates Salutes Thomas Edison

In a Foreword to a new book, “Edison and the Rise of Innovation” about Thomas Edison, Bill Gates salutes Edison with these words:

“In the pantheon of American innovation Thomas Edison holds a unique place”

“He certainly has been an inspiration to me in my career. I am lucky enough to own a few pieces of Edison memorabilia , including his sketch of an idea for improving the incandescent light bulb and some papers on finding a substitute for rubber…”

“Thomas Edison remains a powerful exemplar of creativity, perseverance and optimism…” [Bill Gates – Edison and The Rise of Innovation] 



Third Annual Thomas Edison Invention Challenge a Big Success!

Twenty-seven teams of excited students ranging from 6th grade to high school competed in the third annual Thomas Edison Invention Challenge. Held on the campus of New Jersey Institute of Technology [NJIT] on Saturday, May 11th, this alternate energy technology themed competition capped 6 months of work by the student teams. Teams from all over northern and central New Jersey got up bright and early to bring their inventions to NJIT. Read more at Edisonmuckers.org.

Racers … Start Your Engines

Her engine doesn’t growl, and there are probably no fancy exhibits or models standing around her; but she is as clean as a whistle when you turn her on – and everyone will recognize the image of Thomas Edison on her hood.

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